The British National Party’s latest controversial campaign broadcast has been slammed and censored for using horrifying cartoon images relating to the murder of soldier Lee Rigby.
The five-minute video, which highlights Rigby’s death, has become the most-watched video in the political group’s history with more than 150,000 views – but was shunned by the BBC.
The cartoon video footage shows a bulldog in Union Jack colours encountering a shadowy figure with blood covering his hands and wielding a meat cleaver.
The startling image is reminiscent of footage from when the young army drummer Rigby was brutally murdered last year by two religious extremists Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale who used a cleaver to hack him to death after running him down outside Woolwich barracks.
And the attack has been used by the BNP to promote extreme far-right wing views about immigration and religion.
MM quizzed BNP spokesman Simon Darby on why the party had chosen to use the imagery.
Mr Darby said: “With regards to Lee Rigby, a lot of people were very shocked that election day will take place on the anniversary of his tragic death.
“It draws attention to the issue – but we are focused on preventing future deaths and being denied the right to do that is shocking.
“The fact that one of our British servicemen was beheaded in the middle of capital is shocking. I think the video is controversial in terms of ‘politically-correct Britain’. But we are here to tell the truth and not to sensationalise the things we believe in.
“What we are looking at is that there is a reason why Muslims are angry and you can’t ignore this. We are invading their countries and that is upsetting them, this issue can’t just be swept under the carpet.”
HORRIFYING: The cartoon shows a shadowy figure with bloody hands and wiedling what looks like a meat cleaver
The video footage also shows boats full of people arriving at land signposted as ‘Soft Touch Britain’ as well as British airports filled with women wearing burkas while the BNP bulldog complains about immigration policy.
The controversial party’s members have indicated their satisfaction with the outcome of the video and have lashed out at the BBC for leaving it on the cutting room floor.
“It is a stunning video and I think that we can be really pleased with it,” added Mr Darby.
“It is really interesting that the BBC censored it and refused to play it. We are willing to put them to the test and have sent them the full video.
“It is astonishing that they would try and censor it. It might work in China or North Korea but people in this country don’t react well to things being censored and the general public will just stick two fingers up and watch the video in its entirety elsewhere.”
CONTROVERSIAL: The video shows Asian men in a car drinking alcopops while harrassing a girl outside a school
However, the BBC claim that they in fact did not ban the video – which also mocks Conservative leader and Prime Minister David Cameron, his Liberal Democrats counterpart Nick Clegg, UKIP’s Nigel Farage and Labour head Ed Miliband – but were under no obligation to play it in its entirety.
A BBC spokesperson said: “The BBC did not censor the broadcast. The BNP asked us for advice on the content on the broadcast and we advised them on the relevant guidelines and the law, when they subsequently submitted the broadcast it was editorially compliant.”
PROVOCATIVE: The campaign cartoon uses images of the UK border
The video also focuses on some of the parties other areas of interest – including child grooming, a topic which party leader Nick Griffin has been very vocal on.
“I suppose I am quite surprised but you never know with the BBC,” added Mr Darby. “We mentioned the northern grooming issue which they have taken a stance against so we will just have to see what they do next.
“All the video shows is real people trying to tackle real issues that we find very relevant.”
The BNP leader himself appeared at the end of the clip and stated: “The other politicians are all the same. They’re all to blame.”
BNP are hoping to replicate the success they achieved in 2009 by collecting more than one million votes – which enabled them to claim two seats in Parliament.
However, the inclusion of the Middleton serviceman in the video has infuriated a large number of British people who took to Twitter to vent their anger:
The #BNP are absolutely disgusting. Trying to play politics with the murder of Lee Rigby to support your racist, islamophobic agenda. Shame!
— Matt Whittles (@Matt_Whittles) April 29, 2014
Saw the BNP advert. Was literally laughing out loud until they used Lee Rigby’s murder for their vile bigotry and now feel quite sick.
— Stephanie Farnsworth (@StephFarnsworth) April 29, 2014
The #BNP‘s party broadcast should’ve been banned along with their cartoon. Awful that they try to use Lee Rigby’s death for political gain.
— Alex Le Vey (@AlexLe_Vey) April 29, 2014
Apparently we should all vote BNP cos the election date is the anniversary of Lee Rigby’s murder. They’ve stooped very low there.
— Warren (@waz_shake) April 29, 2014
The worst thing about the BNP Party Broadcast is that they continue to make ‘political points’ from Lee Rigby’s murder. Horrid.
— Sam Cook (@CookSamJ) April 30, 2014
The BNP are not on the list of major parties and therefore do not automatically qualify for a Party Political Broadcast ahead of May’s European elections.
Fellow controversial party Britain First also used the tragic soldier in their slogan for the upcoming European elections, sparking calls for Electoral Commision head Jenny Watson to resign.